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Cynthia Rylant. Author. Cynthia Rylant. Cynthia Rylant is an award winning children’s and young adult author whose work includes picture books, poetry, short stories, and novels. . Virginia Native.

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cynthia rylant1
Cynthia Rylant
  • Cynthia Rylant is an award winning children’s and young adult author whose work includes picture books, poetry, short stories, and novels.
virginia native
Virginia Native
  • Cynthia Rylant was born right here in Virginia, in Hopewell, Virginia, to be exact. She was born in 1954 which makes her 57 years old. She lived in Virginia with her mom and her dad when she was a little girl.
moved to west virginia
Moved to West Virginia
  • Cynthia Rylant’s parents divorced when she was four years old. Her mother took her to the mountains of West Virginia to live with her grandparents until she was eight years old.
living in the mountains
Living in the Mountains
  • Cynthia Rylant remembered the four years she lived with her grandparents in the mountains when she wrote her first book, When I Was Young In the Mountains. She used this experience of living with her grandparents as a model for her book.
cynthia rylant2
Cynthia Rylant

In the book, When I Was Young In The Mountains, she tells about life in West Virginia’s Appalachian Mountains. This book was named a Caldecott honor book, a very important award for a picture book.

cynthia rylant says
Cynthia Rylant Says
  • “Growing up, I loved comic books, cats and dogs, pajama parties, and the Beatles. I wasn't very creative. I liked to play too much, and preferred playing cops and robbers on bikes, or tin can alley, or dolls, instead of doing something that showed results, like writing a story or drawing a picture. Playing is still the greatest training you can have, I think, for being a writer. It helps you love life, it helps you relax, it helps you cook up interesting stuff in your head. I loved animals as a child, I put a lot of animals in my books today. ”
henry and mudge books
Henry and Mudge Books
  • Cynthia Rylant is also the author of the Henry and Mudge series. She says, “The idea for Henry and Mudge came from my own life.”
more on henry and mudge
More on Henry and Mudge
  • “I once owned a 200-pound English mastiff named Mudge. My son, Nate was seven years old at the time. The two together became Henry and Mudge in my books.”
cynthia rylant says1
Cynthia Rylant Says
  • “Anyone who’s ever loved a dog knows what a treasure a good dog is. You just can’t be unhappy for very long when you have a good dog licking your face, shaking your hand, and drooling all over your shoes.” Check out a Henry and Mudge book from the library!
other book series by cynthia rylant
Other Book Series By Cynthia Rylant
  • Mr. Putter and Tabby
  • Poppleton
  • Annie and Snowball
  • Rise High Private Eyes
cynthia rylant loves animals
Cynthia Rylant Loves Animals
  • “I loved animals as a child, I put a lot of animals in my books today, and I live with some wonderful animals. Martha Jane is my big white dog, and she loves pizza, chasing tennis balls, and sleeping on the couch. Leia is my little black-and-white dog, and she likes running in circles. My cat Blueberry likes only one thing: food, and lots of it. My other cat, Edward Velvetpaws, likes chipmunks, but they don't like him.”
some other picture books by cynthia rylant
Some Other Picture Books by Cynthia Rylant
  • The Relatives Came
  • In The Night Country
  • The Old Woman Who named Things
  • The Great Gracie Chase
the van gogh cafe
The Van Gogh Cafe
  • One of Cynthia Rylant’s chapter books is The Van Gogh Café. Magic things happen at the Van Gogh Café, and Clara is one reason for the magic. Clara is ten and believes that anything can happen like magic muffins and the possum that chose to hang outside the window of the Van Gogh Cafe by its tail.
missing may
Missing May
  • Missing May is a chapter book for older readers that won the Newbery medal in 1993. Missing May takes place in West Virginia and is a sweet and simple story of love, sorrow and loss. Summer, a twelve year old tells the story.
every living thing
Every Living Thing
  • Here is a book of twelve short stories about animals and people. Each story captures the moment when an animal causes a human being to see things in a different way. This book is a great read aloud!
more about cynthia rylant
More About Cynthia Rylant
  • If you want to learn more about the life of Cynthia Rylant, read her autobiography, But I’ll Be Back Again.”